(Closed) Does saving yourselves for marriage do more harm than good?

posted 4 years ago in Married Life
Post # 61
Member
269 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

I’ve slept with about 15 men and it’s the best thing I ever did for myself – meeting Fiance and sleeping with him was like “WOAH, this is what I’ve been missing out on!” I’ve always been very liberal and as long as I’m respecting myself and being safe I don’t have an issue with sexual freedom. 

That’s just me personally and everyone is different, but if I’d married the first guy I got intimate with my life would be very different and I’d never know what I really wanted. The purity push makes me sad. There’s nothing wrong with experiencing your body and sharing that, and there’s also nothing wrong with choosing one man for life. Each to their own!

Post # 62
Member
1312 posts
Bumble bee

I’m all for waiting to have sex until you’re ready (I was 21 and in love with the first person I had sex with) but I’d never marry someone without having sex first. I also wouldn’t marry someone without living with them first. I know everyone has a different experience, but I was in a great relationship… until we moved in together. It fell apart very quickly. I believe when you marry someone, you should know all parts of them beforehand. I don’t like surprises especially when I pledge to stay with someone forever.

ETA: Just for a personal story… My fiancé was married before me, and he dated his ex all throughout high school and beyond (about 6 years) before getting married or moving in together. Well, they were married for 9 months before she wanted a divorce. Her reason? She wanted to date other people and explore her life as a young twenty-something. I think it’s important for young people to “experiment” and find out what they like/don’t like (not just with sex but with relationships, too) before making such a huge commitment. 

Post # 63
Member
1401 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2015

There is a nuance between faith and religion that is very rarely acknowledged in this conversation, and thus I think it’s a little nearsighted to generalize that people who wait for marriage for “religious reasons” have been pushed there in a damaging way by sex shaming, purity programs, etc.

I waited until marriage for sex and for cohabitation. I never signed a “True Love Waits” card, I never wore a purity ring, and I was never threatened with hellfire and brimstone. I made that choice for myself based on my FAITH, not my religion (And for the record, Darling Husband had experience before me). I have made a commitment to myself and my husband to be fully his, which I think has only strengthened our relationship.

I think the divorce conversation plays in here as well. I come from a protestant background that is not nearly as vocally anti-divorce as the Catholic church, but my commitment to abstain until marriage (again with the commitment to give myself wholly to my husband) reinforces a lifetime commitment to marriage. That is also a commitment to work on our relationship daily – as partners, as lovers, and as friends. This isn’t to say that others who did engage in premarital sex or premarital cohabitation can’t/don’t also make that daily commitment — I just think for us those two things have dovetailed.

We are very newlyweds (10 days) and I can’t tell you how blessed I feel to be deepening and strengthening our relationship daily. 

TL;DR – there’s a difference between making faith-based and religion-based decisions/commitments — especially surrounding the role of sex pre-marriage. Those who abstain can make a faith-based choice to do so without the perceived damage of shaming, etc. that is rooted in religion.

Post # 64
Member
504 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

I’m probably going to raise some eyebrows on this one, but my Fiance and I live together but haven’t had sex yet. Our wedding is in October. I was raised in a conservative Christian home and always taught to save sex until marriage. We had to learn really quickly how to communicate while we were long-distance, and we have been extremely open about communicating our sexual desires and expectations. It was always important to me to save that part of a relationship for my husband. We could have sex right now, but at this point, I feel like it would actually damage our relationship because I would feel guilty or dirty for doing so before the wedding. Fiance has been nothing but supportive and respectful, and we’ll be each other’s firsts. I’m glad we haven’t been with anyone else, because then there will be no chance for one of us to feel jealous or inadequate compared to a previous partner. 

I’m sure this view wouldn’t work for everyone, and at the end of the day, I believe everyone should do what is best for their unique relationship.

Post # 65
Member
264 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

I guess I can’t see the connection between sleeping with multiple people and your marriage lasting longer.  It makes it sound like marriages only last based on good sex…that makes me think that around 5 years in you’ll get bored and want to have sex with someone new and that will make your marriage fall apart. As someone who has been on both sides of the fence, here’s my personal experience.

My ex-husband was my first. We were married for 6 years, moved in together 6 months prior to the wedding when our seperate apartment leases ended.  Our divorce had absolutely nothing to do with the quality of sex….if it did, there are soooo many things we could do to fix it (I was a passion party rep on the side during that marriage. trust me, anyone is coachable and anyone who wants to can learn).

My current Fiance and I have not slept together and have dated two years. We live down the street from each other, but own seperate homes and will sell one hopefuly prior to our wedding.  I’m so much closer to him without having had sex than I was to my ex.  I know for sure if we got old and impotent, that I wouldn’t stray, and that we would love each other just the same.  This added cushion of security and faithfulness during celibacy makes me that much more excited about marrying him. If he could wait this long and be faithful, I’m sure he’ll stay faitful when I’m healing after childbirth, while we’re apart for business trips, or other unknown areas of life’s journey…and if the sex isn’t good in the begining, I’ll enjoy the practicing and progress. We have a lifetime to learn each other physically and get better together.

 

Post # 66
Member
179 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: November 2015

 

ladysugarbear:  I like your post.  I was thinking something similar while reading PP.  Sure, sex is important and good, but a good marriage doesn’t last longer or end sooner because of sex. 

And sadly enough, someday sex will be hard, or impossible, or not as big a part of a marriage.  If you’re growing old with someone, well, you should be marrying them for more than sex.  Think of marriages you’ve heard of where the couple stays together despite accidents or paralysis or diseases.  Obviously there’s more to a good marriage than good sexual chemistry.  So if the communication and non-physical relationship is better because of waiting, then great.  Those that can and do wait should be respected (as much as those who didn’t wait think they should also be) because I think waiting probably requires a lot more self-discipline and work especially when it’s chosen from conviction rather than any religious-based fear.

  • This reply was modified 4 years, 3 months ago by  futuremsd1113.
Post # 67
Member
3470 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2012 - The Gables Inn, Santa Rosa, CA

I don’t think they inherently suffer “more” than anyone else adjusting to those things all at once instead of one at a time. It’s not for everyone, but I’ve known couples who worked out those kinks and ended up with a strong marriage.

And with a divorce rate of 50%, obviously the “try it before you buy it” mentality doesn’t work that much better anyway.

Post # 68
Member
1624 posts
Bumble bee

LOL. Should we start asking every person who posts on the emotional boards with relationship troubles if they slept with their SO yet? Certainly sexual intimacy issues can be deal breakers in relationships, but honesty, respect, open communication, non-judgmental attitudes, and willingness to both apologize and forgive, are also equally important. If a couple has issues with any of these other components, I can see how sex can be unsatisfying and the relationship fails.  

Post # 69
Member
268 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2016

Logically, I see how most people are on the “try before you buy” side of things, and I was too as a teenager.  Until I became a Christian, I figured I would just go with feelings because really who wants to wait?  I never had a boyfriend in high school, thank goodness but now being engaged, both my fiance and I are waiting and have “saved” ourselves for marriage.  Not because we believe that pre-marital sex will send us to hell (there is grace for sin), but because we believe that this pleases God.  Sex is such a special and wonderful thing, and a huge thing, which is why the Bible asks for it to be reserved for marriage.  That being said though, it is VERY important to discuss expectations before getting married.  And as some posters have said, there might come a time when sex becomes difficult, but that’s marriage and commitment to your spouse!

Post # 70
Member
901 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2017

reptilelvr:  I actually have many friends who waited until marraige to have sex and they regret it. Some are divorced, some are still married, all of them waited because of their “Faith”/religion. Of course, others waited and are very happy they waited. But waiting and then regretting it is still definitely a thing, although publicly they would never admit that. 

All my life, I had been told that sex was special just for marriage, that I would feel an emptiness if I had sex outside of marriage. As I got older, I decided I didn’t necessarily want to wait for marriage anymore. I just wanted to wait until I met someone who I truly loved and trusted. The night when I lost my virginity, I felt…ecstatic, satisfied, at peace. I didn’t experience any of this sorrow or punch-in-the-gut that I was taught to believe. I still don’t regret it. It’s one of my favorite life experiences. (haha)

 

Post # 71
Member
4043 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

This is going to sound terrible but as someone who slept with their Fiance after one day of reconnecting after high school, I would say that for me, waiting would have been impossible, although I will say that I wish I didn’t lose my virginity when I did because I def wasn’t ready and felt a little bit of pressure because everyone else was, but that’s a story for another thread! 

Post # 72
Member
1025 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2015

letterstolove:  I don’t :/ Christian or not. Eh. Of course I know Christian couples who are divorced now, so much more to a relationship than sex. 

Post # 73
Member
1888 posts
Buzzing bee

Well, first I want to say that I don’t feel that the choices other people make in their relationships affect me, and if waiting makes someone happy, that’s wonderful for them. However, I knew that waiting was not for me, and in fact part of the reason I’m marrying my fiancé is because the sex is so incredible. I can tell from our chemistry in that area that there is something really special about this relationship. Of course, I have other, not-as-amazing experiences to compare it to, so I know how you can date someone and be really attracted to them and then find out in the bedroom that things just don’t fit right.

It’s funny, I was always very adamant about wanting to live with someone before getting married, too, but now after living with my SO, I don’t think it’s as important. If you’ve been together several years and have spent extended time together (vacations, whole weekends, etc), I think you probably know the person well enough.

Post # 74
Member
1401 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2015

letterstolove:  Obviously we can’t hear tone via the Internet, but I’m reading the faith quotation marks with an air of condescension/snark. So — to flesh that out a little further:

I really DO think it is important to make the distinction between faith and religion. Religion is almost like a code of conduct which serves to qualify/disqualify individuals based on a set of rules. Faith is relationship-based and is not based in the laundry list of things religion tells individuals they’re not allowed to do.

My choice to abstain centered on my relationship with Christ and the relationship I hoped to foster with my one-day husband. It isn’t about what a pastor said or what a minister threatened or what peer pressure was around me. Ultimately I’m accountable to myself, my husband, and my Savior. For me, part of that accountability was reserving part of myself to enter into this lifelong covenant.

I completely understand that that’s not the case for everyone, and I respect everyone’s individual decisions. My whole point in bringing this distinction up (twice now) is to try to offer another perspective that is often not heard (or is dismissed with the aforementioned condescension).

The judgmental and prejudiced comments about the damage done by churches related to abstinence I believe are partially inflammatory — not to say that rebuking in the name of religion doesn’t happen or isn’t troublesome. But some of us really DO make faith-centered choices that aren’t based in fear, judgement, etc.

TL;DR AGAIN! Equating religion, faith, and “purity culture” misses the mark on many levels. Judgmental and prejudiced comments about damage, religion, and abstinence I believe are often unfounded and partially inflammatory. Some of us really DO make faith-centered choices that aren’t based in fear, judgement, etc. and lumping all religion/faith/purity abstinence choices together and discounting their validity comes across as intolerant and borderline disrespectful.  

Post # 75
Member
901 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2017

BeachBee1988:  I’m intolerant and disrespectful against my own faith? Okay….

I was sharing my own very personal and vulnerable experience, and also the experience stories my friends have shared with me. I don’t really know how that comes across as “unfounded” and “inflammatory” when I am sharing true stories. And I specifically said some of them waited because of their relationship with a higher power and they are perfectly happy. 

You’re not really understanding my point and I was replying to some other person anyways, not you. I know you want to distinct yourself from traditional religion and abstinence-only stuff, which is great, but that means I’m not talking about you. I am talking about the culture I was raised in, which I am passionate speaking out against. But according to your own definition, you’re not included in that. Just like you can speak out about what you think, I can speak out about what I think.

So….I don’t understand why you are coming off as so defensive when I wasn’t even talking to you specifically…or even if I hypothetically was???

I’m sorry if my life experiences and those of my friends are considered “condescending” to you. 

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